2 years full-time for FdSc (Foundation Degree)

Confetti, Nottingham

UCAS course code:

Institution code:

  • 64 UCAS Tariff points; and
  • GCSE - English and Maths Grade C / 4

To find out what qualifications have tariff points, please use our tariff calculator.

International qualifications

We accept qualifications from all over the world – check yours here:

English language entry requirements

You can meet our language requirements by successfully completing our pre-sessional English course for an agreed length of time, or by submitting the required grade in one of our accepted English language tests, such as IELTS:

Would you like some advice on your study plans?

Our international teams are highly experienced in answering queries from students all over the world. We also have members of staff based in Vietnam, China, India and Nigeria and work with a worldwide network of education counsellors. Find out more about advisors in your country.

Fees and funding:

Visit our fees & funding page for more information.

Additional Costs

Your course fees cover the cost of studies, and include loads of great benefits, such as the use of our library, support from our expert Employability team, and free use of the IT equipment across our campuses.

We advise you to budget between £50 - £250 for an external hard drive and SD cards. Whilst you will be provided with storage for your work on the servers it is also good practice to back up your digital files to an external source.

Library books
Most study modules will recommend one or more core text books, which most students choose to purchase. Book costs vary and further information is available in the University’s bookshop. Our libraries provide a good supply of essential text books, journals and materials (many of which you can access online) – meaning you may not need to purchase as many books as you might think! There may also be a supply of second-hand books available for purchase from previous year students.

If you're undertaking a placement year, you'll need to budget for accommodation and any travel costs you may incur whilst on placement. Many of our placement students do earn a salary whilst on placement which can help to cover these living costs.

Print and copy costs
The University allocates an annual printing and copying allowance of £20 depending on the course you are studying. For more details about costs for additional print and copying required over and above the annual allowance please see the Printing, photocopying and scanning information on the Library website.

Visual effects has become an integral part of the production process for film, television and advertising and is one of the most creative and technical aspects of modern media production.

On this course, you’ll explore the Visual effects industry for film and television while developing the artistic and technical skills expected of a VFX artist, across a range of disciplines, applications and technology.

You will have the opportunity to explore a wide array of processes and workflows associated with VFX production through studio practice, technical workshops, as well as academic research and study.

By the end of the course you’ll have developed a strong portfolio of both 2D and 3D  VFX work, tailored to your own career aspirations.

On this course you’ll be working on industry-standard software, such as Nuke, Maya and will have access to a wealth of high end camera and studio technology.

Teaching and learning experiences will include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • group tutorials
  • academic tutorials
  • workshops
  • presentations and pitches
  • visiting Industry professionals
  • teamwork
  • independent study

93% of our degree students would recommend studying at Confetti to others. (National Student Survey 2020)


We give students the opportunity to go on a variety of trips throughout the year. There have been a number of great trips previously, including a visit to the Bournemouth Visual Effects, Animation and Games Festival (BFX) - you can read about the trip here.

Depending on the module, you may be assessed through:

  • 3D development work
  • video sequence production
  • design and research tasks
  • case studies
  • portfolio work
  • reports and evaluations
  • lab reports
  • essays
  • visual and verbal presentations

What you'll study in year 1

This module introduces you to the assets you’ll be working with in VFX productions. You’ll develop your skills operating a range of digital technologies in the acquisition of video and audio assets for VFX sequences. By understanding the mechanisms and technologies involved in image and data origination, you’ll develop an understanding of the relationship between principal photography and the VFX professional.

This module introduces you to the main principles of creating 3D content and integrating created 3D content with another source (typically a digital film camera) and making it conform or fit into that environment. The module also introduces the important notion of the virtual camera, and how the 3D software camera needs to match and replicate the qualities of the physical or real film camera.

This module develops your skills in compositing when working with 2D Graphics. You’ll be introduced to 2D image basics, including layering, masking, keying, and notions of colour space, project set-ups and flexible reusable templates. You’ll also spend time exploring the history of compositing and its roots. The module also examines different methods by which mattes can be created and how they might be manipulated and used in VFX compositing.

This module examines the art of matte painting and the role of the environment technical director. With the advent of 3D CGI the matte painter’s job has increasingly moved away from creating 2D backdrops of landscape and cityscape to include working with geometry in what is often phrased as 2.5D. You’ll explore painting techniques and their role in creating environments whilst developing skills in photo real paint artistry.

What you'll study in year 2

This module concentrates on the process of achieving an accurate camera solve or matched object geometry from plates shot with moving film cameras. You’ll explore the application of camera movement within an image and the difference between object tracking and camera tracking. You’ll develop skills in the creation of more realistic and professional VFX sequences as well as learning the important process of rig removal.

This module allows you to explore the role of the rigger and the working relationship and interactions with animators and modellers. You’ll learn to design, create, test and maintain character, vehicle, cloth and prop setups working with animators and modellers to meet the technical needs of a project. You’ll also extend and advance your skills in modelling as the module complements and builds on your existing hard surface modelling skills with soft surface modelling aimed at creating organic forms to technical specifications.

In this module you’ll learn about making particle systems, structures, cloth, fluids and crowds move under the forces of physics. Within the VFX industry these are the jobs of an effects animator or effects technical director. You’ll learn to use VFX software to simulate complex behaviours and phenomena (fires, breaking glass, fluids etc.) and be able to understand and communicate using the language of Newtonian mechanics.

During this module you’ll undertake appropriate self-directed projects, working collaboratively on creative work, allowing you to directly apply the knowledge and skills learnt throughout the programme in the context of the workplace. This module aims to develop your overall professionalism and provide you with the knowledge and resources to begin a career in the creative industries.

The nature of creative industries is increasingly defined by freelance and self-employed models of work. Consequently, individuals seeking work in industry need to appreciate the pressures of working on multiple projects to strict deadlines and the subsequent demands this place on time and resources. Similarly, an understanding of professional practice and the legal and economic imperatives in industry is important, as is effective communication, self-efficacy and autonomy. This module aims to develop these skills and knowledge by challenging you to develop a range of self-directed projects.

On this course you'll study in Confetti HQ - our brand new £9.1million digital media hub. You’ll have access to:

  • Industry Spec Workstation PCs
  • Industry-standard digital film cameras and lights
  • Green Screen studio space
  • Professional Studio facilities

Specialist software, including:

  • Nuke
  • Mari
  • Autodesk Suite (Maya, Mudbox)
  • Houdini
  • Adobe Creative Suite
  • Zbrush,
  • Unreal Engine
  • Quixel Mixer
  • Wacom Cintiq graphics tablets
  • Motion capture facility

Work experience

Our Talent Development team work closely with Course Leaders to link students with opportunities across the industry. As a student studying at Confetti, you'll also benefit from its commercial creative businesses.

These include Metronome, our live music and events venue; our esports and live streaming complex, Confetti X; commercial broadcast television channel, Notts TV; and Antenna; a co-working space for the creative industries.

There will be regular opportunities to work with these businesses, whilst Confetti also supports and has connections with local music festivals, creative businesses, and is part of Nottingham Trent University.

At Confetti, we offer students the chance to ‘Do It For Real’ – get out into real industries and experience working in various roles that take their interest.

Our Talent Development team work closely with Course Leaders to link students with opportunities across the VFX industry, and live briefs – like working on visual effects for a real film as some of our students had a chance to do, gaining them IMDB credits and tonnes of experience.

Experiences like these are what help make our graduates extremely employable - have a read of one of our alumnus’ stories, and how studying at Confetti helped him land a job at the Oscar-winning VFX house Framestore.

Guest speakers

Throughout the year, students are invited to attend various talks and events with visiting industry experts. Recently, students were visited by Framestore’s Maxwell Smith who gave an insightful lecture about the VFX industry and how to impress employers within it.

Industry Week

You'll also take part in Industry Week  where you’ll be able to meet a range of professionals within your field of interest as well as other areas of the creative industries. Past guests have included the likes of Framestore, Industrial Light and Magic, The Mill, Access VFX and Aardman Animations.

Previous Industry Week guests included:

  • VFX artist and supervisor Jon Holmes
  • VFX artist Michael Wilde

Check out our OnDemand service here. 

Top-up to a full honours degree

After finishing your foundation degree, you may decide to go straight into industry or top-up to a full honours degree.

Future careers

You can also move straight into your career in a variety of roles within the visual effects industries:

  • Roto artist
  • Compositor
  • 3D artist
  • Digital preparation
  • Layout artist
  • Lighting technical director
  • Match move artist
  • Matte painter
  • Animator
  • Technical director
  • VFX supervisor

Previous students are working at companies, such as:

  • Framestore
  • Double Negative
  • Pinewood Studios

Open Days

Saturday 13 July - London
Saturday 6 July - Nottingham